T h e U t o p i a n L i b r a r y

w o r k ▪ p l a y ▪ l e a r n ▪ s h a r e

speaking of gaming in libraries…

This just in (to my emailbox from my library director)…

Critics say ‘Oh no’ to Halo
Specifically, a library hosting Halo 2 contest

…an article from the Daily Herald, a suburban Chicago newspaper.

Advertisements

25 July 2007 Posted by | gaming in libraries, glls2007, in the news, sad realities | 3 Comments

Illinois “day of unity”

In a press release issued on May 8, the Illinois Library Association‘s Public Policy Committee announced a “Day of Unity” on Monday, May 14. The ILA is encouraging libraries throughout the state to demonstrate opposition to House Bill 1727, the mandatory public and school library Internet filter legislation, by taking some constructive and creative action:

  • Speak up to our legislators. Call, write, fax, do it all.
  • Turn of the Internet and explain to patrons what will happen if HB1727 becomes law.
  • Install a demonstration filter and show patrons how it blocks access to legitimate information.
  • Crank up existing filters to their highest settings so patrons can experience the effects of full-blown filtering.

If you live in Illinois, contact your state legislators and tell them that HB1727 should not be passed. Even if you don’t live in Illinois, please support our intellectual freedom and share your thoughts with our state officials!

10 May 2007 Posted by | computers in libraries, legislation, libraries, sad realities | Leave a comment

1…2…3…4…Go!

As Ruth threatened, I am here to make my introduction, and golly is it overdue! (Get it? Overdue? On a library blog? Ugh.) I arrived home from Computers in Libraries 2007 on Thursday night, spent yesterday recovering from 4 jam-packed days of learning, and then spent a gorgeous spring day at work today. I shouldn’t whine about spending the day indoors, though, as it was a good day for talking to friendly library folks. I helped two recent Iraqi transplants get their library cards and find ESL class schedules. Three be-Heely‘d boys hit me up for some biographical background on Leonidas after seeing the movie 300. And I talked to some college kids about whether they’d use IM reference if we had it. Their response–“Heck yeah!” That’s what I like to hear.

I also like to hear about organizations getting together to solve problems sensibly. The Illinois Library Association has partnered with MySpace to spread the word about internet safety. The NetSafe campaign consists of a series of bookmarks that will be given to every public library in Illinois. ILA has also put up a nice, succinct list of articles about online predators, cyberbullies, and social networking. Unfortunately, well-timed and widely distributed bookmarks may not be enough to save Illinois residents from the cold death grip of censorship. Recent months have seen the introduction of bills into the state legislature that would:

  • require schools and public libraries to block all social networking and chat access (The Social Networking Website Prohibition Act, S.B.1682)
  • force public libraries to install filters, whether or not they receive e-rate funding, to “to prevent the display on a public computer of any visual depictions that are obscene, child pornography, or harmful to minors.” This same act allows any individual to take action against the library if another library patron was viewing obscene websites, leading to $100 a day fines for libraries found to be non-compliant with this law that is patently unenforceable due to the limitations of filtering software (Internet Screening in Public Libraries Act, H.B. 1727).

What gives, Illinois? Those of you who live in the land of Durbin and Obama (and oh yeah, that Lincoln guy!), call your representatives! For the love of all that is right and good! All you need to do is call your reps and say “Vote No on House Bill 1727.” Easy peasy. Even a lazy bum like me can manage that.

21 April 2007 Posted by | sad realities | Leave a comment

“traits for the 21st century librarian”

Michael Stephens finds the funniest stuff. Check out Traits for the 21st Century Librarian from LISNews.

20 April 2007 Posted by | play, sad realities | Leave a comment